Abandoned 70-year-old open well to be rejuvenated

A 70-year-old open well abandoned for over two decades is all set to get a new life, with residents of Madivala showing keen interest to rejuvenate the water body, which once sla­k­ed the thirst of an entire village.

Located amid the bustling street on Someshwara Temple Road in Madivala, the open well, constructed during the pre-Independence era, was lying amid a huge pile of garbage. Now, many local residents have taken up the initiative to rejuvenate it, without seeking any government help.

Social activist Dr Sandeep Kumar K C, who took the lead, said they had to initially fight to clear the well of the rubble. “Many residents were drawing water from the well till a few years ago when it dried up. Thereafter, people started throwing garbage. As a result, some of the leachate from the garbage may have entered the well’s aquifer. We have to test the water and take precautionary measures to avoid contamination in future,” he added.

A recharge well has been constructed next to it. Residents are planning to landscape and fence the area calling it Madivala Antaragange. There are plans of installing a filtration plant so that water can be used as a public tap for drinking purposes, Dr Sandeep said.

For household needs

Many elderly women still remember how they used to draw water from the well. Lakshmamma says as a newlywed 50 years ago, she would walk to the well drawing water for household needs. 

“The water was extremely sweet, unlike the water we are receiving now. The well water was worshipped like God and used for all purposes, including marriages, village festivals, etc,” she recalled. 

Ammayyamma reminisced she could draw the water with her hand without a rope, as the water sometimes used to fill to the brim. She said once a drunk accidentally fell into the well, after which, people stopped using the water. 

But now, if the well gets rejuvenated, it can help the public as there is a huge water crisis in the area, she said. The local administration had constructed the well in 1944, which has been inscribed on the well’s slab.

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